Synopses & Reviews
When Albert Einstein told Franklin Roosevelt in 1939 that the atomic bomb was possible, he did not tell the president about another discovery he had made, something so extreme and horrific it remained a secret...until now. This extraordinary new novel from one of the most brilliant talents in contemporary fiction is a standout literary thriller in which one man stumbles upon the discovery Einstein himself tried to keep hidden.
When twelve-year-old Daphne Marrity takes a videotape labeled Pee-wee's Big Adventure from her grandmother's house, neither she nor her college-professor father, Frank Marrity, has any idea that the theft has drawn the attention of both the Israeli Secret Service and an ancient European cabal of occultists or that within hours they'll be visited by her long-lost grandfather, who is also desperate to get that tape.
And when Daphne's teddy bear is stolen, a blind assassin nearly kills Frank, and a phantom begins to speak to her from a switched-off television set, Daphne and her father find themselves caught in the middle of a murderous power struggle that originated long ago in Israel and Germany but now crashes through Los Angeles and out to the Mojave Desert. To survive, they must quickly learn the rules of a dangerous magical chess game and use all their cleverness and courage as well as their love and loyalty to each other to escape a fate more profound than death.
A pulse-pounding epic adventure that blurs the lines between espionage and the supernatural; good and evil; past, present and future, Three Days to Never is an exhilarating masterwork of speculative suspense from the always remarkable imagination of the incomparable Tim Powers.
"Powers (Declare) delivers another top-notch supernatural spy thriller. When Frank Marrity's grandmother dies unexpectedly during 1987's New Age Harmonic Convergence, his 12-year-old daughter, Daphne, steals a videotape from the old woman's Pasadena house that turns out to be a Chaplin film long believed lost. Before Daphne can finish watching the film, its powerful symbolism awakens a latent pyrokinetic ability in her that burns the tape. Frank later discovers letters that prove his grandmother was Albert Einstein's illegitimate daughter. This comes to the attention of a special branch of the Mossad specializing in the Kabbalah as well as a shadowy Gnostic sect interested in a potential weapon discovered by Einstein that he didn't offer to FDR during WWII a weapon more terrible in its way than the atomic bomb. In typical Powers fashion, his characters' spiritual need to undo past sins or mistakes propels the ingenious plot, which manages to be intricate without becoming convoluted, to its highly satisfying conclusion." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"With Three Days to Never, Powers has once again seen fit to cobble up another mind-boggling, heart-stopping, smile-inducing fantasy-thriller." Denver Post
"Telepaths and telekinetics...a fire-starting poltergeist...a woman who's turned herself into a man through magic and force of will, and Charlie Chaplin's handprint in the concrete outside Grauman's Chinese Theater all play a part in the deadly scramble that follows....This is a wild and wooly romp fun, too." Library Journal
"Powers' metaphysics come off a tad muddled, almost as if he is making them up as he goes along, but their very outlandishness makes the story all the more compelling, no matter how ludicrous." Booklist
"Powers succeeds wonderfully with the sorrowing, guilty figure of Einstein, convincingly imagined here as a genuine tragic figure." Kirkus Reviews
Albert Einstein's groundbreaking scientific discoveries made possible the creation of the most terrible weapon the world had ever known. But he made another discovery that he chose to reveal to no one—to keep from human hands a power that dwarfed the atomic bomb.
When twelve-year-old Daphne Marrity takes a videotape labeled Pee-wee's Big Adventure from her recently deceased grandmother's house, neither she nor her college-professor father, Frank, realize what they now have in their possession. In an instant they are thrust into the center of a world-altering conspiracy, drawing the dangerous attentions of both the Israeli Secret Service and an ancient European cabal of occultists. Now father and daughter have three days to learn the rules of a terrifying magical chess game in order to escape a fate more profound than death—because the Marritys hold the key to the ultimate destruction of not only what's to come . . . but what already has been.
About the Author
Tim Powers is the author of numerous critically acclaimed novels, including Declare, Last Call, Expiration Date, Earthquake Weather, and The Anubis Gates. He is a past winner of the World Fantasy Award and lives in San Bernardino, California.